Farm Life in South America
Week 3: Las Tunas, Ecuador
Our first week of international travel begins!
First stop: Quito, Ecuador.
We managed to time our travel perfectly and make it into Ecuador before COVID restrictions hit hard.
A quick goodbye to our parents and we were off!
Nellie had her first (legal) alcoholic beverage, so that was pretty exciting.
And she discovered Julian the Sloth, who we eventually saw multiple times on our trip.
We spent the night in Quito and then flew directly to Manta, where we traveled to our first destination: Las Tunas.
Insane views from our flight going to Manta. These are some big boy mountains!
We arrived in Las Tunas, where we found ourselves a Workaway volunteer gig. Here, we volunteer on a small farm for several hours a day in exchange for free accommodation & food.
The view from our farm was not too bad>>
Our host built this beautiful home with her late husband. Everything on the farm was built and maintained by them for years.
We chose this Workaway because we wanted to get a taste of what life on a farm would be like.
Never a dull moment.
Some of the daily farm tasks include:
- Scooping poop. A lot of it.
- Taking care of the horses and taking them out to the pastures.
- Feeding the chickens and trying to avoid the killer rooster.
- Fixing broken pipes that explode all over the farm.
- Selling chicken eggs to the neighbors.
- Burying dead chickens after they try to escape and get caught by the watchdog, Nunki. There were many casualties.
A common question we get — why Las Tunas, Ecuador?
We chose to work on a secluded farm outside of a random pass-through town for a few reasons:
- It was the best way to dive into learning Spanish. Being on a secluded farm with a few other people, we quickly started to pick up our initial Spanish vocabulary.
- It was safe. Traveling for the first time can be intimidating, especially in a new country. We chose a simple farm life for the first month as we gained more confidence in traveling around (and speaking Spanish).
- We made incredible friends. We chose this Workaway because we would be with other volunteers. This made the farm life so much more exciting.
- It was cheap! We lived off of food from the farm and went grocery shopping once a week.
- It was right by the beach. After working on the farm, we had some free time, so we could visit the beach and practice our surfing.
Why a farm?
We wanted to experience something completely different.
Chasing chickens, grooming horses, scooping poop, fixing broken pipes, and so many more activities.
It was all out of our comfort zone and we were forced to problem solve.
A perfect challenge for the first month of a gap year.
Where the hell is Nell?
Las Tunas, Ecuador